Final 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 R H E
Reds 0 0 3 0 1 0 0 2 0 6 13 1
D-backs 0 2 0 2 0 0 0 1 0 5 11 1

A two-run eighth inning by the Cincinnati Reds (44-45) broke a 4-4 tie and led the visitors to a 6-5 victory over the Arizona Diamondbacks (43-45) at Chase Field in Phoenix.

That was the result today as Strat-O-Matic games of Glen Head, N.Y., continued its announced plan to simulate the entire 2020 Major League Baseball season on a day-by-day basis for as long as actual game play is on hold.


Help set the lineup, batting order for the simulated Reds:

Have you ever dreamed of your opportunity to “manage” the Reds? Now is your chance. Learn more below!


Mark Payton led off the top of the eighth as a pinch-hitter for Pedro Strop and singled. After Freddy Galvis struck out, Shogo Akiyama followed with his third hit of the game, a double, moving Payton to third. Joey Votto then hit a sacrifice fly driving in Payton with the go-ahead run. Eugenio Suarez then followed with a single that drove in Akiyama — who was waved home in a very animated fashion by Redleg Nation commenter/manager Melvin, serving as a third-base coach — with what turned out to be the game-winning run. Arizona then scored a single run in the bottom of the eighth off Amir Garrett to pull within 6-5. Raisel Iglesias came on with two outs in the bottom of the eighth to strike out Eduardo Escobar with the potential tying and go-ahead runners on base.

Trailing 2-0 in the top of the third inning, the sim Reds scored three times — one on a double by Suarez and two more on a double by Jesse Winker off Arizona starter Zac Gallen. Nick Castellanos hit a solo homer in the sixth which tied the game at 4-4.

Votto continues to look more and more like the vintage version of himself. In five plate appearances, he singled twice, walked twice, and hit the afore-mentioned eighth-inning sacrifice fly. As in recent real seasons, Votto has come on after a very slow early-season sim start at the plate.

The victory — the team’s second straight for Melvin — pulled the sim Reds within two games of the Cubs and Cardinals, tied for second, and four games of first-place Milwaukee, which fell to St. Louis today.

Here is the sim Reds box score, as provided by Strat-O-Matic:

B-Pinch Hit For Strop In 8th Inning
E-Subbed Defensively (SS) For Garrett In 8th Inning
F-Subbed Defensively (CF) For Castellanos In 9th Inning

A-Pinch Hit For Rondon In 6th Inning
C-Pinch Hit For Clarke In 8th Inning
D-Pinch Ran For Cron In 8th Inning

Standings following the July 3 games:

NL Central WON LOST PCT GB
Brewers 47 40 .540 0.0
Cubs 46 43 .517 2.0
Cardinals 46 43 .517 2.0
Reds 44 45 .494 4.0
Pirates 35 52 .402 12.0

The 2020 schedule has the Reds again at Chase Field in Phoenix Saturday for the second game of a three-game series against the Arizona Diamondbacks. Trevor Bauer pitches for the sim Reds, while lefthander Madison Bumgarner will start for the D-backs.

Help set the lineup, batting order for the simulated Reds:

Have you ever dreamed of your opportunity to “manage” the Reds? Now is your chance.

Strat-O-Matic has agreed to allow Redleg Nation to submit the Cincinnati Reds’ lineups for each day’s simulated game. We want all of our readers who want to participate to get involved.

Here is how it will work:

  • In each wrap up of that day’s simulated game, Redleg Nation will post the opposing starting pitcher for the next game. You will know who the pitcher is and whether he is left-handed or right-handed, and you can use that information in creating a lineup for the next game, and submitting it in the comments below. “Splits” such as performance vs. left-handers or right-handers are replicated in the Strat-O-Matic game algorithm, and therefore should be considered.
  • We will accept lineups from every reader who wants to submit one. The lineup that will be submitted to Strat-O-Matic each day will be the one that receives the most positive replies (in effect, “yes” votes) from readers other than the submitter. In case of ties:
    • First tiebreaker: Lineup submitted by the reader who has had the fewest number of opportunities as a “manager.”
    • Second tiebreaker: Lineup submitted earliest in the comment thread. (So get your lineup in “early” each day.)
  • What is “early?” Redleg Nation posts these articles daily between 5 and 6 p.m. Eastern time. Strat-O-Matic’s deadline for us to submit a lineup for the next day’s game is midnight. On most days, we’ll do this before “bedtime,” which is typically between 10:30 and 11 Eastern time.

All players’ batting stats

All players’ pitching stats

Batting and pitching player stats by team

Since Melvin was the victorious Redleg Nation commenter/manager today, he has priority for Saturday’s lineup. Have fun with this! If you have any questions, please post them in the comment string below. Here are the “managerial records” of our Redleg Nation participants to date:

Commenter/
“Manager”
WON LOST PCT
Peter Onte 2 1 .667
Jon Davis 9 5 .643
BK 9 6 .600
James Owens 3 2 .600
Gonzo Reds 6 5 .545
Redsfan4life 5 5 .500
RedsEuphoria 1 1 .500
Tomn 1 1 .500
Doug Gray 1 1 .500
Melvin 3 4 .429
Don 2 5 .286
AirborneJayJay 0 1 .000
Jeff 0 1 .000
VaRedsFan 0 1 .000
Mark Moore 0 2 .000
Tom Mitsoff 0 2 .000

About Strat-O-Matic

Strat-O-Matic has been in the sports simulation business since the 1960s. A USA Today article contained this explanation:

Strat-O-Matic and other baseball simulations use statistics from the previous season to create “cards” for each player on a roster. The team managers select the batting order and the starting pitcher. From there, a series of dice rolls and calculations determines the outcome of each at-bat.

Strat-O, as it’s known to longtime players, first gained its immense popularity as a board game. The company has since expanded to a downloadable Windows version and one that’s played online. A few years ago, it introduced Baseball Daily – a new iteration that combined the player cards from the previous season with statistics from the real season being played at the same time.

Unlike many video games, the Strat-O-Matic results are based on algorithms that account for players’ performance based on statistics that their statistical experts project for each player in the 2020 season. It’s not a game played with a joystick that relies more on the skill of the person with the video game controller in his or her hand.

The simulation software will keep comprehensive statistics for all teams for the season, so we’ll be able to track year-to-date leaders in many statistical categories. Our current plan is to provide statistical leader summaries here at Redleg Nation each Sunday. You can follow the season at Strat-O-Matic.com, where they plan to post the results from each day’s schedule at 2 p.m. Eastern time.

25 Responses

  1. Tom Mitsoff

    Melvin — just FYI — I did double-check what I sent to Strat-O-Matic, and I did have Castillo batting ninth. They made a mistake when they entered the lineup. I’ll make sure they are aware of it for Saturday. And, fantastic job at third base!

    • BK

      I’m glad we won. I’m not sure how Strato would handle us protesting the game!

      • Melvin

        Hahaha! I agree. BK! Thanks Tom for always staying on top of things. 🙂

  2. Jon Davis

    Current Roster
    (* = player has NO options)
    (+ = LHP or LHB)
    (^ = Switch Hitter)

    Our current 26 man roster is:
    C – *+Barnhart, *Casali
    IF – *+Votto, *+Moustakas, *Suarez, *^Galvis, Rodriguez
    OF – +Akiyama, Lorenzen(18), *Ervin, *Castellanos, +Payton, +Winker, Senzel
    SP – *Bauer, *Desclafani, *Gray, *+Miley, Castillo
    RP – *+Reed, Iglesias, *+Garrett, *Sims, *Strop, *R. Stephenson, Lorenzen, Kuhnel

    Guys on the 40 man roster not on active roster
    C – Stephenson, Farmer
    IF – Garcia, +Vanmeter, Blandino
    OF – Aquino, +Jankowski, *+Schebler
    SP – Mahle, Santillan, DeLeon, Antone
    RP – Bowman, Hendrix, Shafer, +Smith

    Finally here is a list of relevant non 40 man players
    C – Chris Okey
    IF – India, Davidson, Colon
    OF – +Friedl, +Powell, Barnes, Fairchild, +Hannah, +Siani
    SP – +Lodolo, Greene, Gutierrez, +Naughton, +Raley, Solomon, Lillie, +Sanmartin
    RP – Thornburg, +Biddle, Romano, +Finnegan, Carpenter, Alaniz, Powers

  3. Redsfan4life

    Good job Melvin Keep it up.
    Bumgarner up next

  4. Tomn

    Hey, let’s end this simulation and start the season. Votto’s really heating up!

  5. Melvin

    All Right! Two in a row! Let’s go! Castillo not great this time but he along with our bullpen and decent defense was good enough with our hitters coming through. To further what Tom said Votto is now hitting .417 since his IL stint. His overall OBP is .398. He and Aki are a powerful one two punch at the top of our lineup. Definitely going to leave our best RBI guy, Suarez, right behind them with two more “steaks” today. Rays beat the Cubs. That’s great! I would have rather, at this point, the Brewers beat the Cards but I’ll take what I can get. lol We need to at least be even with the Cards and the Cubs the last few games since the Cards are at home vs. the Giants for three and the Cubs, while having the last day off on the 22nd, face the Whitesox for two at home. The Brewers will be in the battle of their life facing the Padres and Dodgers out west their last six games. We will have an off day, after sweeping the Cubs, and then the Mets for two to finish out. Looking ahead is good but we to take care of business now. Let’s win the rest together guys. Go Reds (sim)!

    • BK

      I think the big decision for tomorrow is do you try to get Lorenzen his 19th start and as a result sit a better hitter? If you play Lorenzen, then who do you sit:

      – Ervin, his numbers dropped a bit when we started playing him everyday, but when we used him almost exclusively against LH starting pitching, his OPS was in the Top 10 in the league. Even with his drop off, he still has our second best #s

      – Castellanos. He’s really been heating up over the last month. Big HR led the way, today. Stats show he’s holding his own defensively in RF.

      – Akiyama. Team MVP and in the conversation for league MVP.

      – Votto. Well you summed him up already.

      • Melvin

        Thanks BK. Still thinking. Not positive about a few things still. Continue to welcome everyone’s thoughts including Tom and Doug if they’d like.

      • Melvin

        Of course can’t leave Aki out and Casty either right now at least for this game. I agree. Obviously leaning toward Mikey since he is currently in the lineup but still don’t know for sure. Didn’t that Bum guy, lol, beat us last time?

      • Melvin

        Bk or anyone, do you think Strato holds it against us using Castellanos in LF instead of RF where he has played? Every little thing matters at this point.

  6. BK

    RH hitters enjoyed a more than 200 point split advantage against Bumgarner last season. I’d suggest as many RH hitters as you gut can stand. Bauer is averaging 5.25 innings per start in sim world.

  7. Melvin

    Akiyama RF
    Votto 1B
    Suarez 3B
    Castellanos LF
    Lorenzen CF
    Casali C
    Moose 2B
    Galvis SS
    Bauer P

    Explanation of the lineup: I know we’re facing a lefty. However Senzel hasn’t hit hardly at all all season so Moose even though batting LH is still a better bet than Senzel or AlfRod. Just going to move him down in the order. Casali over Barnhart. Yes Galvis in the eight hole. This is not final yet. Always welcome thoughts from all of my coaches. 🙂

    • RedsEuphoria

      I recommend Phillip Ervin in the lineup vs. a lefty, probably in place of Lorenzen if anyone.

      Ervin and Castellanos absolutely mash against lefties.

  8. Melvin

    I will tell all of you what I’m thinking if you’d like to help. Will it be a low scoring pitchers dual? If so should I, for defensive purposes, have Senzel over Moose and keep Lorenzen in CF. Should I go with offense with Ervin over Lorenzen (although I think Mikey can hit him too). Should I have Moose and Ervin in or should I just keep it the way it is now. I don’t think I should start AlfRod probably but it is a possibility. After Doug’s article the other day I kinda wish it was Garcia instead even though I like Alfrod a lot. On the outside chance we could bring up JGar if we wanted but our chemistry has been good and don’t want to mess that up not that JGar instead of AlfRod would necessarily do that.

    As a side note I forgot to mention earlier it was good to see Strato use our late inning defensive guys today with Lorenzen in the outfield and AlfRod in the infield.

    • BK

      Melvin … if we’re playing for the big 162, keep Lorenzen in the lineup over Ervin. Two more Lorenzen starts and we can send Rodriguez down for Bowman. I think the extra pitcher, particularly a good one like Bowman is better than an extra position player.

      If you are playing for Jul 24, start Ervin. He’s our best hitter against LHP.

      Jose Garcia. Playing the simulation and what may happen in the majors are two different things. Jose Garcia not even a consensus Top 100 prospect. He’s only played at A+. He floundered in the AFL. Doug has seen him play, I doubt any of the Strato card makers have. He’s not going to provide us a boost, because he’s not going to have a good card.

      Moustakas is just fine defensively as is Ervin. I’m sure Strato has read the defensive data (Ervin was very good last year). Castellanos actual defensive data shows he’s better in RF than LF. As I read the the Strato rules, when we play someone ‘out of position’ in the OF, Strato simply translates their data from one spot to the next. In other words, he doesn’t get the lowest possible defensive rating (1-5 scale). So, if you overall lineup works best with Castellanos in LF, I’d go for it. If you get to manage the real Reds, please leave him in RF–he’s much better there.

      AlfRod is working as planned. Strato is not using him as a PH, which was the goal. It’s possible Blandino would do well as a PH (his actual track record is quite good), but our younger players have generally underperformed their actual #s in Strato (e.g., VanMeter, Farmer, Senzel). I think our best bet is to go with a 4-man bench, but AlfRod is fine for now.

      • Melvin

        Thanks for your help. Still thinking.

      • BK

        Lots of ways you can go … happy to support whatever you decide.

    • Don

      I would play Ervin instead of Lorenzen in the going for wins by July 22nd.

      I would stick with Mouse @ 2B. Mouse was 2 for 6 with a double in 2019 real life baseball.

      Bumgarner did not pitch vs Sim reds the 1st time teams played.

  9. Gonzo Reds

    Lorenzen good, Strato will be like what when we request 2 way status. I’d put Senzel in for Moose but in 9 hole. I refuse to give up on our top prospect the last few years and against a lefty we almost have to give him shot, don’t we? And as BK so wonderfully spelled out, 9 can be a good spot for him, with patient hitters ahead of the pitching spot at 8.

    Good otherwise and with whatever you do… like you… just want to win…

  10. Melvin

    Okay Gentlemen. Thank for all of your comments and suggestions. It helps to have other views when making “important” decisions even if they’re conflicting. I’m definitely going for it to “win it all” however much that is before the real season starts on the 23rd. Bottom line; we have to win tomorrow. Every game is a must win game. With that in mind, although I’m very tempted to start Lorenzen, especially with his two way status coming up, I believe Ervin will give us a little more of an edge and a better chance TOMORROW. Castellanos is more used to RF and Ervin in LF. Don’t know if it matters in sim world but that’s where I’m putting them just in case. lol Likewise I believe Moose is our best option at 2B. With all of that being said here is my amended lineup:

    Akiyama CF
    Votto 1B
    Suarez 3B
    Castellanos RF
    Ervin LF
    Moose 2B
    Casali C
    Galvis SS
    Bauer P

    Obviously we need Bauer to pitch one of his best games. I believe he will. 🙂 I hope my arms get real tired from waving around all of those runners from 3rd to home.

  11. Bill Hedges

    I had tickets for this weekend series . . . grateful at least for a strat-win.